Book Review: The Woman Outside My Door by Rachel Ryan @SimonSchusterCA @simonschuster @netgalley #thewomanoutsidemydoor #bookreview #bookreviewer #bookblog #bookblogger #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: Simon & Schuster Canada

PUBLICATION DATE: November 24th, 2020

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Happy Publication Day to Rachel Ryan and The Woman Outside My Door. Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada for the eARC of this title via NetGalley.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

All children have imaginary friends, Georgina tells herself. It’s perfectly normal, and they all grow out of it in the end. But when her seven-year-old son, Cody, tells her about New Granny, the new friend he’s met in the park, Georgina is instantly suspicious. Something—call it maternal instinct—tells her he isn’t making it up.

But maybe Georgina is losing her mind. It wouldn’t be the first time, after all. And with her own mother’s recent death leaving her bereft and trying to cope with life as a busy working mom, it’s no wonder she’s feeling paranoid that Cody has invented a “New Granny” to replace his beloved grandmother.

Her husband, Bren, becomes the voice of reason, assuring Georgina that it’s just a game, the product of their son’s overactive imagination. But what if Cody’s imaginary friend is not so imaginary after all?

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MY REVIEW:

Riveting, captivating, pulse-pounding. When Georgina is at the park with her son Cody and two of his friends, they suddenly emerge from behind some bushes and Cody proceeds to tell his mom that he was speaking with an old lady in the bushes and said she gives him candy. He says she is new granny. Perplexed about what is going on, Georgina isn’t sure what to do. Does her son have an over-active imagination, is she losing her mind? Georgina’s mother passed away a year ago so maybe Cody is missing his granny and has a new make-believe granny? Even creepier is the fact that Cody insists that this new granny is not only real, but is in fact his real new granny.

What unfolds is an interesting and intriguing story that will leave you guessing what is going on. With Rachel herself being an unreliable character we as a reader are unsure what and who to believe. What makes Rachel such a great unreliable character is that she herself has a lot going on in her life – her mother passed away a year ago, her husband lies to her, he had a one-night-stand with his ex, which he lied about in many ways, and now he doesn’t believe her stories and isn’t concerned with Cody and his “new granny” idea. Her husband tries to convince her that she needs to seek professional help saying that he is concerned with her mental health. Can her mental health be deteriorating again.. if there is some truth to what she believes might be going on, who can she trust to help her when everyone seems convinced that she is the wrong who is wrong?

An interesting story that will keep you flipping the pages as the story unfolds. You’ll love this book!

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MY RATING: 4/5 stars

Book Review: Little Cruelties by Liz Nugent @SimonSchusterCA @simonschuster @netgalley #littlecruelties #bookreview #bookreviewer #bookblog #bookblogger #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: Simon & Schuster Canada

PUBLICATION DATE: November 24th, 2020

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Happy Publication Day to Little Cruelties by Liz Nugent. Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada for the eARC of this book via NetGalley.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

Three brothers are at the funeral. One lies in the coffin.

Will, Brian and Luke grow up competing for their mother’s unequal love. As men, the competition continues – for status, money, fame, women ..

They each betray each other, over and over, until one of them is dead.

But which brother killed him?

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MY REVIEW:

I loved the storyline of this book and the way in which it was written. It was fast paced, and gave you glimmers into the past piece by piece, as you slowly begin to put the pieces of the puzzle together. I find the way it was written leaves you wanting to know more, and flipping through the pages to get some more information about the brothers and their dynamics between one another and what makes them who they are today.

3 brothers all with secrets, lies and betrayals. They all have something to hide and they have all competed for their mother’s love and approval since they were little boys. I enjoyed how the story was told from alternating timelines, often jumping from year to year in random order. When 3 brothers who pretty much feuded and fought with one another their entire lives, and two of them are present at the third brother’s funeral, you wonder which brother is in the coffin and which of the other two brothers is responsible for his death. A complex and interesting story.

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MY RATING: 3/5 stars

Book Review: When Villains Rise (Market of Monsters #3) by Rebecca Schaeffer @RaincoastBooks @HMHKids @HMHCo @HMHteen @netgalley #whenvillainsrise #netgalley #bookreview #bookreviewer #bookblog #bookblogger #booksokthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: HMH Books for Young Readers

PUBLICATION DATE: September 8th, 2020

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Thank you to the publisher for the eARC of this book via NetGalley and for also sending me a beautiful finished hardcover copy of this book.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

Dexter meets Victoria Schwab in this dark and compelling fantasy about a girl who is determined to take down the black market once and for all in the conclusion to the trilogy that started with the critically acclaimed Not Even Bones.

Nita finally has Fabricio, the boy who betrayed her to the black market, within her grasp. But when proof that Kovit’s a zannie—a monster who eats pain in order to survive—is leaked to the world, Nita must reevalute her plans.
 
With enemies closing in on all sides, the only way out is for Nita and Kovit to take on the most dangerous man in the world: Fabricio’s father. He protects the secrets of the monsters who run the black market. Stealing those secrets could be the one thing that stands between Nita and Kovit and certain death in the thrilling conclusion to the trilogy that began with the critically acclaimed Not Even Bones.

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MY REVIEW:

I absolutely LOVE this series and fell in love with the main character Nita from the first novel, Not Even Bones. She is a strong female character, full of life and fight, so much personality, and not afraid to voice her opinion or fight for those she loves and for what she believes in. She is full of determination, not afraid to get her hands dirty when she needs to, and is a fun character to read and follow along. Then there is Kovit, a mean and nasty Zannie, who you will eventually come to love (or perhaps still despise) as you read through this series of books and follow along on his adventures as well. We are introduced to both characters in the first novel, and all three novels in this series follows them along on their life and adventures. I enjoyed how this last novel delved deep into Kovit’s life growing up, and it gives us some insight into what he went through as a young child and young man, to help mold and shape him in to the man and person he is today.

I don’t want to give too much away in this novel for those of you who are new to this series and have yet to read and first two novels in the series, however I can say that if you haven’t read this series yet you are truly missing out on a great series! You need to go and grab your copy of this series today, you will love the unique storyline and the unique  characters throughout the series. 

Well done Rebecca! I loved this series and I am looking forward to seeing what you come out with next!

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MY RATING: 5/5 stars

Book Review: Trial By Fire by Scott James @StMartinsPress @netgalley #TrialByFire #bookreview #bookreviewer #bookblog #bookblogger #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: St. Martin’s Press

PUBLICATION DATE: October 27th, 2020

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Thank you to the publisher, St. Martin’s Press, for the eArC of this novel via NetGalley.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

In only 90 seconds, a fire in the Station nightclub killed 100 people and injured hundreds more. It would take nearly 20 years to find out why–and who was really at fault.

All it took for a hundred people to die during a show by the hair metal band Great White was a sudden burst from two giant sparklers that ignited the acoustical foam lining the Station nightclub. But who was at fault? And who would pay? This being Rhode Island, the two questions wouldn’t necessarily have the same answer.

Within 24 hours the governor of Rhode Island and the local police commissioner were calling for criminal charges, although the investigation had barely begun, no real evidence had been gathered, and many of the victims hadn’t been identified. Though many parties could be held responsible, fingers pointed quickly at the two brothers who owned the club. But were they really to blame? Bestselling author and three-time Emmy Award-winning reporter Scott James investigates all the central figures, including the band’s manager and lead singer, the fire inspector, the maker of the acoustical foam, as well as the brothers. Drawing on firsthand accounts, interviews with many involved, and court documents, James explores the rush to judgment about what happened that left the victims and their families, whose stories he also tells, desperate for justice.

Trial By Fire is the heart-wrenching story of the fire’s aftermath because while the fire, one of America’s deadliest, lasted fewer than two minutes, the search for the truth would take twenty years.

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MY REVIEW:

A gripping, heart-wrenching story that will have you flipping the pages and hooked, wanting to know more. I remember vaguely hearing about this fire and when I found out that a book had been written about it I was thrilled to get my hands on a copy of this book. The story is told from many different point of views which I enjoyed, as it gives many different accounts of various people’s experiences of that night in the nightclub. I cannot imagine what it was like for those inside the nightclub, and their panic to get out alive, as they struggle to find an escape route from the club and make it out into the safety of the night outside. I felt as though I was experiencing the fatal night with them as we read their account of what happened.

We are introduced to several different people in this story and often it was difficult to read the heart-wrenching accounts of what happened. It takes you inside the nightclub and you feel as though you are there with them, experiencing what they are experiencing. I enjoyed reading the facts as well, and following along as the investigation and interviews unfolded.

A book that I highly recommend.

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MY RATING: 5/5 stars

Book Review: The Girl Who Wasn’t There by Penny Joelson @SourcebooksFire @pennyjoelson @netgalley #firereads #thegirlwhowasntthere #bookreview #bookreviewer #bookblog #bookblogger #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: Sourcebooks Fire

PUBLICATION DATE: November 3rd, 2020

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Thank you to the publisher, Sourcebooks Fire, for the paperback ARC of this title and for the eARC via NetGalley.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

I know what I saw.

Nothing ever happens on Kasia’s street. And Kasia would know. Her illness keeps her home for days at a time, with little to do but watch the world from her bedroom window. So when she witnesses what looks like a kidnapping, she’s not sure she can believe her own eyes…

So she sets out to find the only other witness. The girl in the window across the street. The girl who was also watching when things went down.

But what Kasia discovers shocks her more than the kidnapping itself.

There is no girl. 

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MY REVIEW:

Thrilling, addictive, mysterious. I loved how this book kept me guessing. At times I believed what Kasia saw – that she did indeed see a girl in the window across the street. But other times I began to doubt what Kasia saw, or rather what she thinks she seen. Maybe it was a trick of the shadows and the light? After all, if there is a girl in that window from time to time, why do the owners of the house insist there is no one else there? The whole mystery vibe intrigued me in the novel and I loved that.

I enjoyed reading about Kasia and her story. The illness that suddenly appeared in her life and one that kept her home for days at a time. Some days were better than others. Some days she was able to walk around her home and go downstairs and join her family, other times she was bedridden for days at a time. It was interesting to read about the sudden illness that Kasia was experiencing in her life. She had a great personality as a main character. She was witty, determined to fight for what she believed in, she did not give up. She was loving, caring, and strong willed.

An interesting novel that I recommend.

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MY RATING: 3/5 stars

Blog Tour: We Hear Voices by Evie Green @BerkleyPub @penguinrandom @netgalley #netgalley #WeHearVoices #WeHearVoicesBlogTour #blogtour #bookblogger #bookblog #bookreview #bookreviewer #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: Berkley

PUBLICATION DATE: December 1st, 2020

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Thank you to the publisher for inviting me to be part of the blog tour and for the eARC of this book via NetGalley.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

An eerie debut about a little boy who recovers from a sickness and inherits an imaginary friend who makes him do violent things…

Kids have imaginary friends. Rachel knows this. So when her young son, Billy, miraculously recovers from a horrible flu that has proven fatal for many, she thinks nothing of Delfy, his new invisible friend. After all, her family is healthy and that’s all that matters.

But soon Delfy is telling Billy what to do, and the boy is acting up and lashing out in ways he never has before. As Delfy’s influence is growing stranger and more sinister by the day, and rising tensions threaten to tear Rachel’s family apart, she clings to one purpose: to protect her children at any cost–even from themselves.

We Hear Voices is a mischievously gripping near-future horror novel that tests the fragility of family and the terrifying gray area between fear and love.

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MY REVIEW:

Wow this novel was addictive and had me hooked! There were so many twists and shocks that kept me entertained and wanting to read more to see what would happen next. Disturbing, dark, and thrilling, this novel will have you gasping until you turn the final page!

Rachel and her family were lovely people. When Rachel’s middle child and only son Billy catches the pandemic known as the flu, she fears she is going to lose him like many others in the world who contract the flu. However, just when he is on the brink of death Billy miraculously comes back to life, to much the surprise and happiness of his family. However, Billy seems to be different since recovering from the fly. He now has an imaginary friend by the name of Delfy. Not only that, but he randomly does some creepy and disturbing things – asking strange and disturbing questions, some questions children his age do no ask, as well as taking a sudden interest in things that never seemed to interest him before. Happy to have her child happy and healthy again, Rachel is willing to look past all the red flags and the fact that he has a new imaginary friend. Afterall, she does have her son back.

What unfolds is a series of strange happening. It leaves you immersed into the story as you are eager to see what exactly is going on here, and why Billy doesn’t appear to be the only one to have such an imaginary friend.

There are many intriguing and interesting characters in this novel and it is quite easy to follow along and read their individual stories and what they all have to do with one another.

Overall a great book that I recommend.

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MY RATING: 4/5 stars

Blog Tour: The Pretenders by Agatha Zaza @AgoraBooksLDN @Agatha_Zaza #ThePretenders #ThePretendersBlogTour #bookreview #bookreviewer #blogtour #bookblogger #bookblog #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: Agora Books

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Thank you to the publisher for inviting me on the blog tour for this book and for sending me a beautiful paperback copy of the book to read.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

‘I’m perfectly happy lying to myself…If it means getting to stay with you.’

Jasper is ready to surprise his brother; Holly is ready to celebrate their engagement.

Anne tags along for fear of missing out, and John might just be going for another drink.

But Edmund and Ovidia had other plans for their Saturday.
Over the course of one day, these couples must own up to the secrets they’ve been hiding from one another and the lies they’ve been telling themselves. And face the devastating consequences.

Three couples. Two exes. One day. One reckoning.

In her debut novel, Agatha Zaza crafts a modern domestic tragedy simmering with betrayal and deceit.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Agatha Zaza Author Photo (B&W)

Agatha Zaza is a Zambian and Finn at present living in Auckland, New Zealand. Her writing is a departure from her work in fundraising and international development.

The Pretenders was born in Singapore, where she spent three years as a trailing spouse, where she rekindled a long-dormant love of writing. Aside from Singapore, Agatha has worked and lived several countries, among them Uganda and the then Soviet Union. While in Ireland, she earned a Master’s in Equality Studies from University College Dublin and worked in a genuine Irish pub.

Agatha’s work can be seen in the Johannesburg Review of Books and in a PEN International special edition on African writers. She has also published three short books on Amazon. She’s been a passionate slow runner for two and half decades and has recently taken up composting and staring at her new sewing machine.

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MY REVIEW:

I love a good book with many different characters, and this book fit perfectly with that. What better than 6 characters coming together in what will likely be a whirlwind of a day together, packed full with secrets, lies and revelations. I love it!

I enjoyed the dynamics between all of these characters and their relationship or friendship with one another. Such a diverse group of characters that all have something to hide, from one another and from themselves. I enjoyed reading and discovering these lies and betrayals and getting to know each unique character as their individual stories were told and we get a better understand of who they are and what makes them who they are.

I eagerly awaited to see what would happen next and couldn’t wait for that next shoe to drop. Do you truly know your friends and family members? Even those we are closest to, our best friends, or our partners. Do we truly know them? 

A book I recommend that you pick up and read.

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FOLLOW OUR OTHER STOPS ON THE BLOG TOUR:

The Pretenders Blog Tour Image

 

Blog Tour: All Your Little Lies by Marianne Holmes @AgoraBooksLDN @MarianneHAuthor #AllYourLittleLies #AllYourLittleLiesBlogTour #blogtour #bookreview #bookreviewer #bookblogger #bookblog #partner #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: Agora Books

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Thank you to the publisher for the invite to be part of this blog tour and for the beautiful physical copy of the book to read.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

When everything you say is a lie, can you even remember the truth?

Annie lives a quiet, contained, content life. She goes to work. She meets her friend. She’s kind of in a relationship. She’s happy. Not lonely at all.

If only more people could see how friendly she is — how eager to help and please. Then she could tick “Full Happy Life” off her list. But no one sees that side of Annie, and she can’t understand why.

That all changes the night Chloe Hills disappears. And Annie is the last person to see her.

This is her chance to prove to everybody that she’s worth something. That is, until she becomes a suspect.

Drenched in atmosphere and taut with tension, All Your Little Lies takes a hard look at why good people do bad things.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

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Marianne Holmes is the author of A Little Bird Told Me, published by Agora Books in 2018. She was born in Cyprus and bounced around the UK, Germany, Kuwait and Belgium with her RAF parents as a child but is now firmly based in London with her own family. She has degrees in Classics (RHUL) and Linguistics (UCL), neither of which got much use while she worked in marketing.

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MY REVIEW:

This book! Where to start! I enjoyed reading about the mysterious and quirky main character in this novel, named Annie. She is so used to lies, lies and more lies, can she even remember to tell the truth? Does she even know what it means to tell the truth? Often misunderstood, and with a side of her that many people do not see, Annie lives a complicated life. Annie was a unique and interesting character for sure, so it was interesting to read about her day to day life as the chapters unfolded.

I LOVED the opening of this book. She broke into a man’s apartment – a man which she has a huge crush on. Inviting herself into his home while he is out, laying down in his bed, using his washroom, touching his things. It added to the suspense and mystery around how the story would evolve and spoke volumes as to just what type of character Annie is and her values.

When she appears to be the last person to have seen a missing young girl by the name of Chloe, she wants to do what she can to help. There is just one problem – her memory of that fateful evening is foggy at best. Determined to help and uncover the mystery of what happened to Chloe, she winds up being a suspect herself. Afterall, she only wants to help, not to be suspected in the girls disappearance.

A book that I highly recommend you add to your TBR list.

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FOLLOW US ON THE BLOG TOUR:

All Your Little Lies Blog Tour Image

Blog Tour: The Mirror Man by Jane Gilmartin @HarperCollins @JANEGILMARTIN3 #TheMirrorMan #TheMirrorManBook #blogtour #bookreview #bookreviewer #bookblog #bookblogger #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: MIRA

PUBLICATION DATE: October 20th, 2020

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Thank you to the publisher for inviting me to be a part of the Blog Tour for The Mirror Man and for the eARC of this book via NetGalley.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

The offer is too tempting: be part of a scientific breakthrough, step out of his life for a year, and be paid hugely for it. When ViGen Pharmaceuticals asks Jeremiah to be part of an illegal cloning experiment, he sees it as a break from an existence he feels disconnected from. No one will know he’s been replaced—not the son who ignores him, not his increasingly distant wife—since a revolutionary drug
called Meld can transfer his consciousness and memories to his copy.

From a luxurious apartment, he watches the clone navigate his day-to-day life. But soon Jeremiah discovers that examining himself from an outsider’s perspective isn’t what he thought it would be, and he watches in horror as “his” life spirals out of control. ViGen needs the experiment to succeed—they won’t call it off, and are prepared to remove any obstacle. With his family in danger, Jeremiah needs to finally find the courage to face himself head-on.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Jane Gilmartin credit Kerry Brett

Jane Gilmartin has been a news reporter and editor for several small-town weekly papers and enjoyed a brief but exciting stint as a rock music journalist. A bucket list review just before she turned 50 set her on the path to fiction writing. Also checked off that list: an accidental singing career, attending a Star Trek convention, and getting a hug from David Bowie. She lives in her hometown of Hingham, Massachusetts.

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SOCIAL LINKS:

Twitter | Instagram

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BUY THE BOOK:

Amazon |Barnes & Noble | Bookshop | IndieBound | Books-A-Million | Kobo | AppleBooks | Google Play

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MY REVIEW:

If you could have a clone of yourself, would you agree to be cloned? That is the question that Jeremiah is faced with. He agrees to be cloned, and sits back and watches from afar his clone living out his life – with his wife, his job, his son, etc. And he will be paid quite well for agreeing to be part of this cloning experiment. If you were cloned and watched yourself from a distance, would you like what you see?

I loved how this novel began with Day 1 – Jeremiah watching himself as his clone lives his life. All he had to do was agree to the experiment – be cloned, live in an apartment that is all paid for, and watch for a few hours each day as his clone carried on, none-the-wiser, and lived Jeremiah’s life. Jeremiah had to agree to these terms for just one year, and would receive $10 million as part of the agreement.

I enjoyed this novel and the scientific aspect behind it all. A clone of a human being, who believed he himself to be a human, and had no idea what exactly was going on. He didn’t know he was being watched, day in and day out, and being analyzed with his every move. I enjoyed reading about Jeremiah’s thoughts as he watched his clone living his daily life, and what he thought about the whole process. It must not be an easy decision to sit back and watch your clone living out your life, and watching yourself from the eyes of an “outsider”. You might not like everything that you see, and can do nothing to change it as you are secluded from the outside world.

There were many twists and turns, shocking revelations as you read through the chapters, and a great ending that I enjoyed! Be sure to add this novel to your TBR list. You will love it!

Book Review: Return to Virgin River by Robyn Carr @HarlequinBooks #ReturnToVirginRiver #bookreview #bookreviewer #bookblog #bookblogger #booksonthebookshelf

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PUBLISHER: MIRA

PUBLICATION DATE: October 13th, 2020

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Thank you to the publisher for a gifted hardcover copy of this book.

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

Kaylee Sloan’s home in Southern California is full of wonderful memories of the woman who raised her. But the memories are prolonging her grief over her mother’s recent death. A successful author, Kaylee hoped she could pour herself into her work. Instead she has terrible writer’s block and a looming deadline.

Determined to escape distractions and avoid the holiday season, Kaylee borrows a cabin in Virgin River. She knows the isolation will help her writing, and as she drives north through the mountains and the majestic redwoods, she immediately feels inspired. Until she arrives at a building that has just gone up in flames. Devastated, she heads to Jack’s Bar to plan her next steps. The local watering hole is the heart of the town, and once she crosses the threshold, she’s surprised to be embraced by people who are more than willing to help a friend—or a stranger—in need.

Kaylee’s world is expanding in ways she never dreamed possible. And when she rescues a kitten followed by a dog with a litter of puppies, she finds her heart opening up to the animals who need her. And then there’s the dog trainer who knows exactly how to help her. As the holidays approach, Kaylee’s dread turns to wonder. Because there’s no better place to spend Christmas than Virgin River.

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MY REVIEW:

This was the first novel I have read in the Virgin River series, but it was easy to read and follow along and fall in love with many of the characters in this series. I love Kaylee’s character, she was an interesting, kind and caring character that I enjoyed reading about and following along on her journey through life. She was a very likeable character. I also loved Landry’s character, and following along as their friendship evolved and grew over time. They were fun to read about and both were loving, caring characters in the novel. 

This novel will pull at your heartstrings and have you feeling so many emotions that you will find yourself immersed and emotionally invested in the characters as you read along. Full of intriguing characters, an interesting storyline, and a magical time of year – Christmas – this novel is surely to be one that you will enjoy!

On sale tomorrow!

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MY RATING: 4/5 stars